Matrix Audio adds to golfball-sized speaker line
Matrix Audio is showing a new addition to its line of pocket-friendly portable speakers. We spied the new iPro unit at CTIA Wireless 2012 alongside the company's existing nrg, aura, duet and one models.
The iPro is a wired, 3-watt speaker packed into an stackable aluminum cube enclosure which results in a quite weighty unit. The speaker runs off a mini-USB port and one battery charge will deliver about 11 hours of usage according to Matrix.
Details on the iPro are still being finalized, but it was shown at CTIA this week in several colors and will possibly have rubberized versions. Matrix is still finalizing a price, but expects each speaker to run about US$50 and plans to bring the iPro to market in the next month. In the meantime, here's an overview of Matrix Audio's current offerings.
The 3-watt nrg is a mono, wired speaker with a 3.5 mm cable that stays hidden in a groove at the bottom of the speaker until put to use. Only slightly bigger than a golf ball, the nrg gets a bass boost by opening it up and exposing exposing the accordion-style tube that helps carry the tune. It can also be daisy-chained with other nrg speakers and plays for about 14 hours on a single charge. It costs $60.
Also a 3-watt speaker, the difference with the aura model is that it plays audio files from a micro SD card. It gets a sound boost via the company's "Xcavated Bass Amplifier" and like the nrg, it can be daisy-chained with the hidden 3.5 mm cable. The aura plays for up to 14 hours on one charge and sells for $50.
The one speaker adds a few more functions to the nrg. While it’s similar in size and shape, it has a little more power at 3.5 watts and a few more features. The one can be plugged in or connected via Bluetooth and the speaker also operates as a mic for conversations on speakerphone. It also matches the claimed 14 hour battery life of the nrg. These extra features add up to a higher price - $90.
A stereo option in the Matrix Audio line is the duet. The paired speaker features 2 x 3 watt speakers that screw together for easy transport and also opens with an accordion-like tube to produce a bigger sound. The duet pair sells for $60.
Source: Matrix Audio.
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But I think I have only ever seen about 1/2 a dozen people use such devices out in the open areas.....
They are GREAT for audio of people speaking and all that.
I find it better just to use these kinds of things as work desk speakers - for inspirational / motivational talks, and not much else.
They are fine when you are sitting next to them or "doing stuff " in the same room, but against a lot of back ground noise, or in open spaces with not much else happening or over any sort of distance like 10 meters or 3 if there is lots of traffic nearby - they are not much good.
I think they are better off left at home, and running from a power supply instead of batteries.
I am getting a couple more. One for my 93 year old mom who uses Skype on Samsung Galaxy tab 10.1 to have video chat with her children spread around the globe including great grand variety. The built in speakers are barely audible even in very quiet surroundings. The other one I am getting for myself to listen to purely instrumental music stored in my Samsung Galaxy android phone without draining the phone batteries.